Consistency sprinkled with some variety on top is what it takes to make an effective exercise plan.
How much should you exercise?
You have to show up and do the work. Getting to the gym, or outside, or in front of your tv/computer to do a workout needs to happen on a REGULAR basis for you to see an impact. The American Heart Association recommends that you get at least 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes per week of vigorous aerobic activity or a combination of both. If you are taking classes at Coach Mel’s that means you need to take at least 3 classes per week (there is a reason my memberships start at 3 classes per week – wink, wink).
What type of exercise? Where do I start?
You need to find exercise that you enjoy, something that you look forward to doing on a regular basis. If you are just starting out that may mean going for a walk several times a week, or maybe going to the gym to lift some weights, or doing a virtual class either live or recorded. The point is, get started with something that you can manage, then think about changing it up occasionally to try something new. If you go to the gym and the only thing you do is hop on the elliptical for 45 minutes each day, you may see some results rather quickly but you will also hit a plateau quickly. It only takes the body 4 – 6 weeks for your body to adapt to what you are doing before it expects that action and needs more to make any changes. Some resistance training along with some cardio each week is a good plan.
How do I avoid hitting a plateau?
Variety is important when it comes to exercise. At Coach Mel’s, while all workouts exercise the full-body, they are done in different forms, different timing, and different intensity. The workouts themselves also change on a regular basis so when your body starts to adapt to the workout, we throw in new moves that allow the body to have to work in a different way.
Starting is the hardest part, don’t stop and you won’t have to start again
Be mindful that whatever you start should be something that you can continue to do. If you start by going to the gym 2 hours a day, 7 days a week (which I DO NOT recommend) you need to think about if that is something that is reasonable for you to continue to do. Going from that rigorous an exercise schedule to once a week is going to make any progress you made come to a crashing halt. Even taking a week or two off from your normal routine will have you feeling some negative effects of not exercising.
Isn’t something better than nothing?
Yes, absolutely if you can only get 1 day of exercise in per week that is better than nothing but does not expect it to have a positive impact on your health, weight, and. or appearance. Unfortunately, this is when people feel frustrated and stop all together, it is just not enough for you to see any significant change, consistency is the key to come up with the right recipe that works for you!